Lingayat leader Basavaraj Somappa Bommai took oath as the new Chief Minister of Karnataka on Wednesday.
In the ceremony at the Glass House of the Karnataka Raj Bhavan in Bengaluru, Governor Thaawarchand Gehlot administered the oath of office and secrecy.
Outgoing Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, Union ministers Dharmendra Pradhan and G Kishan Reddy, who were appointed central observers by BJP’s parliamentary board for the Karnataka legislature party meeting, BJP national general secretary in-charge of Karnataka Arun Singh, state president Nalin Kumar Kateel and national general secretary C T Ravi were among those who attended the swearing-in.
Ahead of the ceremony, Bommai met Yediyurappa and other Central leaders. The new CM began the day by visiting the Anjaneya Swamy temple in Bengaluru. On Wednesday afternoon, Bommai will take over the office of Chief minister after conducting a pooja at the CM Office in Vidhana Soudha.
After being sworn in, Bommai said floods and Covid-19 are the challenges that will be given priority. “I would like to thank all the people of Karnataka and BJP leaders for giving me this opportunity to serve the state as Chief Minister. I am grateful to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, BJP national president JP Nadda and our leader BS Yediyurappa for choosing me. My first priority is the ongoing flood and controlling the Covid-19 pandemic,” Bommai told reporters at Raj Bhavan.
He further said that his government will work as a team for the poor and the farmers. “I will live up to the faith and trust the people of Karnataka have in me,” he added.
PM Modi congratulated Bommai on Wednesday. “Congratulations to Shri @BSBommai Ji on taking oath as Karnataka’s CM. He brings with him rich legislative and administrative experience. I am confident he will build on the exceptional work done by our Government in the state. Best wishes for a fruitful tenure,” Modi tweeted.
Modi also said no words will ever do justice to the contributions of Yediyurappa. “No words will ever do justice to the monumental contribution of Shri @BSYBJP Ji towards our Party and for Karnataka’s growth. For decades, he toiled hard, travelled across all parts of Karnataka and struck a chord with people. He is admired for his commitment to social welfare.”
Bommai was announced as the new Chief Minister of the state following a party meeting at a private hotel in Bengaluru on Tuesday. The 61-year-old leader from North Karnataka is a close aide of Yediyurappa and has served as the state home minister under him.
Bommai is the son of former chief minister S R Bommai. Born on January 28, 1960, Bommai hails from the Sadara Lingayat community. He is a two-time MLC and three-time MLA from Shiggaon in Haveri district in North Karnataka. In the past, he has held the portfolio of water resources in the Yediyurappa cabinet.
This is the second time a father and a son have become Karnataka Chief Ministers, after H D Deve Gowda and H D Kumaraswamy.
Bommai, whose father was a Janata Party leader, had started his political career with the Janata Dal and worked with senior leaders, including HD Devegowda and Ramakrishna Hegde, before joining the BJP in 2008. By qualification, he is an engineer and had started his career with the Tata group.
Ending months of speculation over his exit, Yediyurappa on Monday stepped down as the Chief Minister, coinciding with his government completing two years in office.